[Guest post by Brian Smith]
Kalabrese: Rumpelzirkus – in my last entry, I alluded to a record that although came up short as my choice for electronic record of the year last year, I had recommended to people more than any other… and this is the record.
Rumpelzirkus is the debut full-length album by Swiss artist Sascha Winkler (aka Kalabrese) after a handful of releases on labels like the legendary Perlon and a history that includes a number of records as the drummer for a hip-hop outfit called Sendak.
Imagine if Can were doing really chill, sophisticated and sexy house music that truly blurred the line between music intended for the home and music geared for the dancefloor. With honest, personal, and universally themed lyrics that put a foot firmly in the world of pop, then you definitely should be buying what this rock is selling. The ONLY reason why it wasn’t my record of the year was because Kalabrese is (was) essentially a “rookie.”
With that, it wouldn’t be me if it didn’t possess at least a little of the experimental candy I long for from just about anyone I listen to. Originally a drummer, Sascha is NOT lost on nuance, space and for all intents and purposes (as the legendary Eric Dolphy said of drummer Anthony Williams), “pulse.” So in addition to all the anticipated drum sounds that define your groove, Rumpelzirkus is rife with all sorts of nifty and well mixed found sound and sampled percussion bits; put together so well, it offers serious feelings like it possibly being one ginormous jam-session that is far more earthy than most house music. It almost has a kind of Cologne (er, KÃ¶ln) like style of avant-jazz conceptuality to it, which is why I think I made the original Can inference to begin with… a kind of Kraut-Haus, if you will.
Blogger Philip Sherbune descridbed Rumplezrikus as:
The closest comparison I can make it to IsolÃ©e’s We Are Monster, and even there the two musicians don’t really sound that much alike; what they share is a commitment to infusing the house format with all the spongy uncertainties of breath, slipping fingertips and room tone, and to morphing dance music’s linear structure into a form just as groovily functional, but with far less predictable follow-through.
I can’t say that I disagree with Philip… I also loved the unorthodoxiness of We Are Monster in very similar ways to this album as well.
This is “Hide,” enjoy!